On the Reddit Freemasonry group, a thread was created asking people why they were Freemasons and why they stayed. There were some great answers, and this post is to draw out what I learned from them. If you didn’t add your answer, you can still do that with a Reddit account.
The picture above combines all of the answers to show the themes and words most often used – learning, becoming, friends, family, and brothers were all recurring themes.
For the rest of this post, we’ll look at the 5 points of the discussion, and what came out of them:
- One reason you are staying a Freemason
- One thing you are trying to achieve in Freemasonry
- One thing you have already achieved
- One Person who has helped you along the way
- What have you learned by being a Freemason
The quotes below are taken directly from original posters.
Why are you Staying a Freemason?
I got a family in this fraternity and I don’t want to leave them. They have taught me a lot of things including how to keep my feet on the ground and how to continue working to become a better man.Respondent
The theme in these responses was the connection with other brothers, and a sense of brotherhood or family. But spiritual connection came up, as did just social activity, and the idea that the “hive is always buzzing”.
What are you trying to Achieve?
Greater wisdom, communal strength and internal beauty.Respondent
In a word, the brothers are after “light”. Everyone expresses this differently; some want philosophy, others want personal growth. Some want to grow in leadership of the organization itself.
What have you already achieved?
reaching out to other people, which was harder previouslyRespondent
In answers to this question, the themes I saw were “community” and “helping others”. One brother noted that he became the “go-to guy” for things when it comes to masonic education and technology in his lodge, and this is really both themes rolled in one: fundamentally community, and also helping others.
One person who helped along the way
My Wife – she is the one who kept telling me to pursue these things and I am here cause of her.Respondent
Whether it’s your spouse or a particular brother, everybody had somebody. The stories in this section are great, because when a person identifies who helped them, it usually comes with a story of a problem they faced, and how they overcame it. The brothers were variously helped by family members, spouses, installed officers, and senior Masons.
What have you learned?
Definitely humility. I see all of these old guys who have been here forever, and they are some of the most humble men I know. They have so much to be proud of but they don’t brag, and on top of that they have accepted me into their order with open arms, and they treat me like one of them. That’s the level of equality in action.Respondent
Humility came up several times. So did the 24-inch gauge and “balancing out important events in our lives”. This I took as a good sign; anonymous internet posters are validating that some of the symbols and messages of Freemasonry are actually what they are learning in lodge.